6.8/10
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28 user 11 critic

The Wrong Arm of the Law (1963)

The crooks in London know how it works. No one carries guns and no one resists the police. Then a new gang appears that go one better. They dress as police and steal from the crooks. This ... See full summary »

Director:

Cliff Owen
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Peter Sellers ... Pearly Gates
Lionel Jeffries ... Inspector Parker
Bernard Cribbins ... Nervous O'Toole
Davy Kaye Davy Kaye ... Trainer King
Nanette Newman ... Valerie
Bill Kerr ... Jack Coombes
Ed Devereaux ... Bluey May
Reg Lye ... Reg Denton
John Le Mesurier ... Assistant Commissioner
Graham Stark ... Sid Cooper
Martin Boddey ... Superintendent Forest
Irene Browne ... Dowager
Arthur Mullard Arthur Mullard ... Brassknuckles
Dermot Kelly Dermot Kelly ... Misery Martin
Vanda Godsell ... Annette
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Storyline

The crooks in London know how it works. No one carries guns and no one resists the police. Then a new gang appears that go one better. They dress as police and steal from the crooks. This upset's the natural order of the police/criminal relationship and the police and the crooks join forces to catch the IPOs (Impersonating Police Officers), including an armored car robbery in which the police must help the gangs to set a trap. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Meet the Mastermind Who Pulls the Strings in the Underworld...and all his mobs and dolls...filling the London fog with laughter and lunacy!!!

Genres:

Comedy | Crime

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 May 1963 (Ireland) See more »

Also Known As:

Falesná ruka zákona See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

After Peter Sellers has shown his gang a film he shot showing the jewelry shop manager opening his safe and thus providing them with the combination, one of the gang asks, "What's on next week?" Sellers replies "A few educational films and training films. Starting off with Rififi (1955).. ["the French film"...The Day They Robbed the Bank of England (1960)...followed by The League of Gentlemen (1960)...After that we're having a discussion of what we've learned from all three films." Each of these titles is an actual film released between 1955 and 1960 depicting burglaries. See more »

Goofs

In the first bank robbery, the robbers drive away from the bank, but in the next shot they are seen approaching the bank again from the opposite direction as the IPO mob divert them down a side street where they are lined up against a wall directly opposite the bank.

The first shop they pass after leaving the bank is an International Stuffs shop. The next shop has an awning pulled down from a higher level than the International Stuffs shop. It also has an arched opening just above the awning. When the IPO divert them down a side street, they are again in front of an International Stuffs shop, but the next shop has a smaller awning, a name sign above it and no arched opening above that (a different facade altogether), and thus, not the same location. No other buildings are shown in full, so it cannot be assumed that they are in the same location simply based on one shop being the same. As it is called International, however, it can be assumed that there are more than one, particularly a fictitious one. And, as stated before, the shop next door is entirely different. See more »

Quotes

Pearly Gates: I made 168,000 knickers selling frocks last year - gowns, I mean.
Inspector Parker: Yeah. Well, if that isn't crooked, I'd like to know what is.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Blitz (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Oh Charley, Take It Away
(uncredited)
Written by Arthur Le Clerq, Frederick Malcolm and Elvin Hedges
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Nicely paced English cops and robbers comedy, with an excellent central idea, and wonderful, innocent sense of fun. Great dialogue and snappy direction.
5 August 2008 | by BOUFSee all my reviews

I loved this when it was first released. 45 years later, it hasn't lost much of its charm. It boasts a great central idea, which develops into one of the most pleasurable, fast-moving loads of innocent nonsense I've seen in a long while. Peter Sellers is on good form, as are comedy co- horts, Bernard Cribbins, John Le Mesurier, Lionel Jeffries, Sam Kydd, and Dennis Price (as Educated Ernest)...even Nanette Newman does a good job. The dialogue is full of the sort of English dagginess made even more popular at the time by co-writers Galton & Simpson; it's great to hear people called 'nit' or 'berk' and the police referred to as the 'bogeys'. And it's not just nostalgia. Cliff Owen's direction seems to get the best out of everyone. Not all of it still works, but it won't detain you, and if you've a taste for British comedy of this era, it won't disappoint. There was a cheap VHS available a few years ago with inaudible sound. I saw the version broadcast by ABCTV in Australia - excellent quality.


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